I watched a TED Talk the other day while pedaling furiously on a recumbent bike. It was an eleven minute offering by Celeste Headlee on how to be more engaging in conversation. The link is https://www.ted.com/talks/celeste_headlee_10_ways_to_have_a_better_conversation?language=en
Ms. Headlee is a radio journalist who has spent the last 20 years working with PBS (Public Broadcasting Service). Much of her job was to interview people. Do you want to be a better conversationalist? Ms. Headlee’s advice can be distilled into ten simple points.
Don’t Multitask – pay attention.
Don’t Pontificate – don’t start talking about your own experience when someone is sharing theirs
Ask Open-Ended Questions – who, what, where, why. . . .
Go With the Flow – be engaged
If You Don’t Know an Answer, Say So
Don’t Equate Your Experience to Theirs
Don’t Repeat Yourself
Stay “Out of the Weeds” – people don’t care about “details“
Listen – Buddha said “if your mouth is open, you are not learning“
Be Brief- FDR once said “Be sincere, be brief, be seated“